After AMD: Intel’s Next Big Battle is with ARM Holdings

Now that it has settled a long-standing legal dispute with Advanced Micro Devices, the top chipmaker can turn to another big headache: the threat from ARM HoldingsIntel couldn’t afford to let it drag on. The world’s largest chipmaker announced on Nov. 12 that it would pay $1.25 billion to resolve allegations by Advanced Micro Devices that its larger rival competes unfairly in the market for computer chips.On one hand, the agreement lets Intel and AMD move past the conflict that’s put the companies at legal loggerheads for years, and it may help Intel resolve ongoing antitrust tussles with U.S. regulators. But a more important benefit of the agreement is that it lets Intel turn attention to what may become an even greater headache in the coming years: the challenge posed by ARM Holdings, maker of the technology used in chips running in a widening array of mobile devices, including the Apple iPhone. Intel “now gets to focus on its real long-term threat,” says Jack Gold, founder of Gold Associates, a research firm. “No, it’s not AMD — it’s ARM Holdings.”

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